A lighted Zappos marquee was installed at the Stewart Avenue headquarters of the online retailer. (FOX5)
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -
Monday marks moving day for Zappos.com as the shoe and clothing retailer officially relocates its headquarters to downtown Las Vegas.
About 1,500 workers are making the transition from their previous Henderson work home to the old Las Vegas City Hall facility.
The move has been in the works for years for Zappos, which started as an online shoe company and later grown and expanded their operation. The company signed a 15-year lease for the facility in early 2012.
As for the city hall building, the facility went through a $60-million renovation. The building underwent rewiring in order to respond to the high-tech demands of the company.
"We have replaced the entire building's infrastructure, from electrical to air conditioning to most of the plumbing," said Zach Ware, who is in charge of the downtown transition.
Since the announcement of the lease, some employees already moved in and began working out of the downtown office.
Four hundred employees will have moved in by the end of this week, and by mid-October every Zappos employee will be working on campus.
The company's Chief Executive Officer Tony Hseih expressed the goal for the move is to not only have his employees in one place but to also enhance the company culture. Hseih has also made a mark in downtown, purchasing properties in the area.
But his decision to move his company's headquarters downtown was in his words a "coincidence."
Hsieh and other execs came up with the idea while out with Andrew Donner, CEO and owner of Resort Gaming Group in the Fremont East District.
"We were walking around downtown, and he let me know that the city was going to move out of city hall, and we all ended up talking together. One thing led to another, and here we are now," Hsieh told reporters Monday.
Ware said the old city hall is not only cheaper than new construction, but it also puts the company in the middle of where they want to be.
In addition, the company plans on having outdoor concerts for both staff and downtown visitors, as well as talking about the possibility of having outside movie nights and other downtown events.
The opening ceremony was extravagant, with everything from a talking robot to a live llama, one of Hsieh's favorite animals, to a cake shaped like the new headquarters itself.
Hsieh said some of the employees won't just be working downtown, they'll be living there.
"We are actually doing a test at Gold Spike for employees to live out of. So we have a handful of volunteers that are living out of that," Hsieh said.
Hsieh bought that former casino property and converted it.
Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman said those efforts will go a long way in revitalizing the downtown area.
"(It's) a really innovative and exciting time for us to look at how Tony (Hsieh) and the team are going to go ahead and handle where his employees are going to be living," Goodman said.
Copyright 2013 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
Monday, July 28 2014 1:54 AM EDT2014-07-28 05:54:28 GMT
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